Datacolor Spyder4 Express review

Colour calibration for all your devices

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  • Works with a range of displays
  • Calibration very quick on iPhone


  • No ambient light sensor
  • Slightly tedious wizard

The Datacolor Spyder4 Express monitor calibration tool marries straightforward operation with extensive display compatibility.

It can be used with standard LCD, LED and wide-gamut displays, and OLED panels and iPhones and iPads.

The Spyder4 incorporates a seven-colour sensor, which promises more accuracy over the Spyder3, while double-shielding over the colour filters is said to stop colours changing over time.

Calibrated images must be viewed through the SpyderGallery app. This works with your iOS device's own photo library, in addition to sites such as Facebook and Flickr.

On an iPad the colorimeter sits happily to the side of the screen, although it's more awkward with an iPhone given the size of the device. Still, once the app is downloaded from the App Store calibration only takes 90 seconds, with the colorimeter plugged into a MacBook or iMac and working over a Wi-Fi connection.

Calibrating a MacBook Pro takes a few minutes, with before and after samples available post-calibration.

The device appears to return the display to a point of faithful reproduction, and subsequent calibrations return consistent results, although the absence of an ambient light sensor means that ambient light levels are not taken into account.

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Tech Specs

Product TypeColor Calibrator
Brand NameDatacolor
Height101.6 mm
Width88.9 mm
Depth38.1 mm

Automated Color Calibration
Spyder4express's simple, clear and automated process makes it straightforward to calibrate your displays to a reference condition. You can view and edit images with confidence on a display calibrated to show true-to-life colors

Full-spectrum color sensor
Spyder4express's patented 7-color sensor improves upon colorimeters that use 3-channel RGB sensors. Each Spyder4express unit is individually tuned in the factory to accurately handle a variety of wide-gamut and normal gamut displays with ease.

Single sensor calibrates all your displays
Spyder4express works with your desktop or laptop, iPad and even iPhone. It works with LCD, LED, OLED, CRT, Retina Display, and other display technologies.

Improved accuracy and stability
The fourth-generation Spyder4express has double-shielded color filters for an even closer match to CIE color standards and improved long term stability. Average accuracy increased by 26% and consistency between Spyder units has improved 19%.

Product NameSpyder4 Express Colorimeter
Product LineSpyder4 Express
Manufacturer Part NumberS4X100
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

Simple Affordable Solution for color calibrating a single display...

Spyder4express™ features a patented, full-spectrum 7-color sensor that can accurately characterize a variety of wide gamut and normal displays. Spyder4express software lets you use the same sensor to calibrate your computer, iPad, iPhone and Android devices (with the free Spydergallery App). No other calibrator has this capability. The fourth-generation sensor uses double-shielded filters for longer life and better performance. On average, accuracy and precision are improved by 26% and 19% respectively.

Why Color Calibrate Your Display?

  • Displays render the same image differently: Calibration tunes your display to a reference standard and brings color consistency across desktop, laptop, iPad, iPhone and Android devices.
  • Displays change over time: Recalibration returns it to reference state for brightness and color
  • Prints often do not match display: Display calibration provides a base for better print matching
  • Wide gamut displays may be oversaturated: Without calibration even wide-gamut displays may be inaccurate.
  • Highlight and shadow details may be inaccurate: Control of brightness, white point and tone response with calibration.
  • Image colors are not true to life: After calibration, images can be viewed and edited with confidence
Photographers and designers can work confidently on a properly color calibrated screen and can assert greater control over the color fidelity of their digital process. Images can be reliably assessed and adjusted on a properly calibrated display, enabling true-to-life reproduction of image files.

How Does Spyder4express Work?

Spyder4express automates and simplifies display calibration. Install the software, attach the color sensor to USB, and step through the wizard. The sensor measures a series of colors on your screen and creates a "profile" that brings your display to a reference state. At the end, you can compare how the images look before and after calibration.